The Committee on International Relations and Emigrants is a working body of the Parliament of Montenegro that monitors and considers proposals and initiatives for the adoption of laws and other acts within its scope of activities, and considers other issues within the competencies of the Parliament of Montenegro that determine life issues of emigrants living in other countries, in its entirety or in any of its segments.
The Committee on International Relations and Emigrants (formerly the Committee on International Relations and European Integration) was established by the Decision on Amendments to the Rules of Procedure of the Parliament of Montenegro on 11 May 2013. At the proposal of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration, with the Decision of the Government of Montenegro, at the end of June 2013, the Center for Emigrants was tranformed into the Diaspora Administration, as a body within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration.
The care of the diaspora - emigrants is an integral part of Montenegro's internal and foreign policy. Montenegro is committed to creating and improving the conditions necessary for the inclusion of diaspora - emigrants into the social, economic and political life of Montenegro. The relationship of Montenegro with diaspora - emigrants is based on mutual commitment and cooperation, assistance and strengthening of mutual relations, with the respect for the specificity and needs of all members of the diaspora - emigrants.
Diaspora - emigrants are Montenegrin citizens and other persons originating from Montenegro, who live abroad and perceive Montenegro as their home country or country of origin and inherit it as democratic, independent, sovereign and civic.
Even though there have been no precise data on the number of emigrants from Montenegro and their descendants in the world, our country has numerous diaspora, which is estimated at the level of its current population.
Taking into account the professional, intellectual, economic and other potential, the awareness of the importance of this issue has matured increasingly, and as a result, in 2015, the Law on Cooperation of Montenegro with Diaspora - Emigrants was adopted, when this area was standardised for the first time in Montenegrin legislation.
Good and synchronised management of emigration potential has been recognised as a very important factor of the overall economic and social development of Montenegro and on 22 July 2017 a Working Group was formed with the aim of working on a new Draft Law on Amendments to the Law on Cooperation of Montenegro with Diaspora - Emigrants.
During the public debate on the new draft law, a total of 119 complaints, suggestions and comments were submitted by the associations and organisations of emigrants, individuals, the non-governmental sector, certain public administration bodies and diplomatic and consular missions of Montenegro. The Working Group held eight meetings and adopted the Report on public debate, thus ending all activities on the formulation of the Draft Law.
The Committee on International Relations and Emigrants, with active participation of its representative at the meetings of the working group on formulating a new draft law, as well as by submitting amendments during the Committee's meetings, has significantly contributed to the improvement of the existing legal solution and to the increase of budgetary allocations for the Diaspora Administration.
The Law on Cooperation of Montenegro with Diaspora - Emigrants was adopted on 26 June 2018 by the 26th Parliament of Montenegro at the Ninth Sitting of the First Ordinary (Spring) Session in 2018. The new Law on Cooperation of Montenegro with Diaspora - Emigrants preserved the civic spirit and an attitude about the need to respect the equal status of diaspora and emigrants and all emigrant groups from Montenegro, and it standardises the relations between emigrants and emigrant associations, as well as state institutions of Montenegro.
In accordance with the new Law on Cooperation of Montenegro with Diaspora - Emigrants, the drafting of the Strategy for Cooperation with Diaspora - Emigrants for the period 2019-2022 will soon start and the Action Plan for its implementation, which will determine priority goals in this matter, specific measures and activities for the implementation of these goals, as well as responsible authorities and deadlines for their implementation. The Committee on International Relations and Emigrants will have its representative within the Working Group for the drafting of the Strategy.
The completion of the normative infrastructure in the field of cooperation with diaspora will continue with the Law, the Strategy and other secondary legislation, which is a necessary condition for creating a favorable environment for the emigrants from Montenegro and for achieving significant results in this important area.
In order to create more efficient policy and of better quality, based on the need to improve cooperation, position and status of emigrants from Montenegro, the Committee on International Relations and Emigrants remains available to all those interested in suggestions and proposals.
Chairperson of the Committee: Andrija Nikolić
Secretary of the Committee: Jasmin Bojadžić
Parliament of Montenegro
Bulevar Svetog Petra Cetinjskog 10, 81 000 Podgorica
Office No 31
Phone: +382 20 404-512